Mario Champi was born in Peru in 1964. He spent most of his youth in Juliaca, a small town in the Andes. When he was very young he would help his father design jewelry. This became a foundation upon which his drafting abilities were nurtured, and his vocation as an artist was born. At the age of 12, he knew he was going to be an artist when a portrait he drew of a young lady, paid with a sandwich, was very well praised by her.
In 1978, his whole family moved to Arequipa, a town of painters. There he was exposed to culture and art books; especially one book about the works of Leonardo da Vinci, which fully convinced him to pursue a career in the arts.
While living in Arequipa, Champi also was introduced to the well known painter Teodoro Nunez Ureta who inspired him. He completed his painting studies at the Universidad Nacional de San Agustin and was such a natural that after only a few lessons in watercolor techniques, he won the National Watercolor Contest El Pacifico Pro-Unamonos in 1988. Champi has had several exhibitions in Arequipa and Lima, the last of which was at the prestigious Galeria Trapecio.
Champi has developed a technique that allows him to obtain the effect of soft pastel without its inconveniences. He uses both acrylic and oils. Acrylics allow him to achieve transparencies, while the oils him to intensify areas that require a stronger color.